Free Minds & Free Markets

Brickbat: Important Lesson

YellingDaniel Hurst / DreamstimeIn Pennsylvania, Downington Area School District Superintendent Emilie Lonardi has formally apologized to two students and said their rights were violated when an administrator harassed and cursed them during their pro-life protest on public sidewalk outside the Downington STEM Academy. Zach Ruff confronted the two, threatened to call police if they talked to other students, told them to go to hell and told them that fetuses are not children but cells.

Photo Credit: Daniel Hurst / Dreamstime

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • Tom Bombadil||

    "The apology comes as part of a settlement with the students after they sued the Philadelphia-area district."

    The incident took place in April and the apology is just now coming and only because it's being squeezed out via litigation. Superintendent Lonardi is pretty much the hero I'd expect to find in the public school system.

  • SQRLSY One||

    Wow, so THAT"S going to be one heck of a sincere apology!!!

  • BearOdinson||

    I think is a perfect example of why it is the Left that are far more intolerant than conservatives.

    I don't care for a number of things socons believe. And this is in no way a comparison of R vs D politicians. But your average conservative is far more likely to be ok with "agreeing to disagree" than your average progressive.

  • CooterBrown||

    These days, absolutely. But I'm sure the pendulum will swing back the other way eventually.

  • Telcontar the Wanderer||

    Aaannnd the Left's transformation into the oppressive social conservatives they profess to hate continues apace.

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    Hell, they met that goal a while back. Now they're headed for "completely becomin the fascist thugs they claim are oppressing them", which I expect to see accomplished some time this decade.

  • Telcontar the Wanderer||

    Nah, these things take time. They're at a low point right now; Trump really has weakened them, not by winning the election, but by forcing them to tantrum where everyone can see. And they'll be too busy conducting the war against Russia through the 2030s.

    It won't be for another generation until they actually start burning down churches and droning NRA holdouts. A new McCarthyism for a new 50s... *20*50s.

  • Drave Robber||

    and told them that fetuses are not children but cells

    "You are cells, too."

  • Tom Bombadil||

    Big, fat, faggy cells.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    So as an educator he employs the Socratic method.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Listen here, son, alright. I'm as gay as the day is long and twice as sunny.

    Must have been overcast that day.

  • Libertarian||

    "I don't give a (expletive) what you think Jesus tells me and what I should and should not be doing."

    He added: "But I sure as hell care what YOU should and should not be doing."

  • Longtobefree||

    Will there be a follow up story on what grades those kids get on their next report card?
    Will there be a follow up report on the next performance review for the 'teacher'?

  • ipsquire||

    Mr. Oliver - you need to do better/more/any research.

    The "students" were NOT students of the school/district involved. They stood on claimed "public" property for their protest. This was NOT a government employee infringing students under his authority's rights, and the wingnut outlet you link mislead you because you didn't get an unbiased version of the story. Ruff's rights are the only ones infringed in this case.

  • ipsquire||

    After reading the settlement, Lonardi and the protesters seem to share the view that EVERY school employee (in the state, I guess) is a government actor with authority over any minor - does Reason endorse THAT overreach??

  • See.More||

    Were the protesters physically assaulted? were they barred from protesting?

    How exactly were their rights violated? Does the right to protest suddenly exclude counter-protest or non-violent confrontation?

    Was the minion an ass? Sure. But that alone doesn't rise to a rights violation.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    He threatened to call police if they talked to any other students. Not barred from protesting, but pretty damn close.

  • See.More||

    Threatened, but did not. Not barred... So... no rights violated?

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    I think that depends on your point of view. Acting as a private citizen, no. Acting as an agent of the state, yes.

    If he's a teacher (and on the clock), I believe that the latter applies.

  • See.More||

    If he's a teacher (and on the clock), I believe that the latter applies.

    How so? He didn't physically assault them... He didn't actually prevent them from protesting...

    So what rights were violated and how?

  • ipsquire||

    He's a vice principal, but the kids protesting are from another school/town/district. Same as the town garbage collector threatening to call the police if you don't stop protesting. No rights violated.

  • LifeStrategies||

    Why don't you post the name of the Administrator who cursed the students? This gives him/her publicity and helps ensure such perpetrators consider/suffer the consequences of his/her actions...


Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online